Top 5 Free Themes for Your WordPress Site

There are many reasons why WordPress is the most popular CMS (website content management system). One reason is that it offers hundreds of free website themes. But with so many options, it can be confusing to choose the ideal theme. Here is a list of top 5 free WordPress themes that I believe offer almost everything you may need to design a powerful and elegant website.

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.

1. AccessPress Lite

AccessPress Lite is arguably considered as the most feature-rich free theme available for WordPress. This is a responsive theme that stands out for its clean and professional design. It offers features similar to premium themes without a price tag. This includes:

  • A wide range of layouts – gallery, portfolio, blog, team-member, multiple homepage, sidebar, and testimonials among others
  • Social media integration
  • Quick contact
  • Full-width slider
  • Call to action

And much more. This WP theme is compatible with WooCommerce, bbPress, and multiple browsers. It is SEO optimised and supports several language translations.

2. Flash

Flash WordPress Theme is considered as the most powerful free business theme. It is highly flexible and can be used for a wide range of purposes. If you are looking to design a modern website, this responsive theme is the ideal option. It offers many features which are hard to find in a free WP theme. This includes:

  • Drag & Drop Site Builder: This built-in, easy-to-use tool is hard to find among free themes.
  • Flash Toolkit Plugin: This unique plugin works with more than half a dozen widget areas for a better-organised layout and interface.
  • Layout Areas: There are specific areas for testimonials and team-member details that can be adjusted as per your needs. Filterable Portfolio: There is an advanced, filterable portfolio that allows you to showcase your work in an elegant and well-organised manner.

3. Shapely

Shapely is another amazing free WP theme that focuses on improving the process of web development. It combines beautiful graphics with practical elements to allow you to create the perfect WordPress website. This responsive theme supports high-resolution Retina display, which means you can include crisp and clear vector icons, text, and graphics on your website.

This is a highly versatile WP theme and can be used in different industries. It allows your site to be compatible with all the commonly used WordPress plugins including:

  • Yoast SEO
  • Contact Form 7
  • Gravity Forms
  • Google Analytics

Or create a powerful online store using WooCommerce. When you choose this theme, there is no need to deal with any coding.

4. Customify

Customify, as the name suggests, is a highly flexible WP theme. It allows full customisation and can be used with Divi, Elementor and Beaver Builder. It provides an easy-to-use drag-and-drop editor that simplifies the process of creating beautiful and functional headers and footers.

Some of the main features of this free WordPress theme are as follows:

  • Advanced header/footer builder
  • Offers premium modules
  • Responsive edit modules
  • Page builder compatible
  • Helps create ready-to-import websites
  • The visual editor delivers real-time results

And the free theme is optimised for SEO and speed.

5. Anariel Lite

This free WordPress theme is ideally suited for small businesses and bloggers looking for a theme with a clean layout. It has both classic and modern elements with focus on content. Feature multiple blog posts on the home page with images.

The free theme offers multiple typography options. It is not only responsive, it is also Retina ready helping ensure that your website renders effectively and efficiently on smartphones. There are many other features that make it just the perfect WordPress theme:

  • Multiple Layouts: Grid layout, sidebars, and boxed layout.
  • Google Fonts: This font comes along with various shortcodes and social integrations.
  • Rich Posts: You can also create audio/video posts using this theme.
  • Preconfigured Blocks: Blocks like About Us, Instagram, and Quote blocks help you save development time.

Download Anariel Lite.

So if you are looking for the most popular free WordPress themes, consider these 5 options. They are designed for ease-of-use and come with a wide range of features almost at par with premium WP themes.

However, if you are looking for a highly customizable website theme then Divi by Elegant Themes is still my favorite and I build websites for clients using this if they don’t pick their own theme.

About Me

I’m Jacinta Thomas, also known as your humble wordpress web design tech whiz and online marketing consultant.

I’m a reserved yet highly motivated and adaptable digital marketing expert ready to use my online marketing knowledge to help your business be seen online and ramp up your sales. I love horses, dogs, cats, country music, chocolate and most of all helping people.

I help family focused entrepreneurs build top ranking, self-managed websites, help work through any wordpress tech issues and get set up with hosting, blogging, SEO and social media, so they can earn more money and live their dream life.

If you’re ready to get your business online, and seen on social media and all search engines then check out my blog, biz resources, jump into my free Facebook group and of course contact me at any time.

Help My Website is Down How To Fix It

Even the best web hosting service provider out there cannot ensure 100% uptime. So there is always a chance that your website can go down. However, it isn’t just the web host that is always the underlying reason for why your website is down.

There are almost endless reasons why a website can go down and how you can fix it.

Website Errors

Most content management system such as WordPress, Joomla, Drupal. Or other website building platform including Squarespace, Wix etc require updates for better features, add on’s and security so often not all these updates work well together. In the case with WordPress themes and plugins can clash with each other and cause website errors or even worse your website to crash.

If you are doing plugin updates and you get an error like this “Warning: array_merge(): Argument #1 is not an array in /home/websitename/public_html/wp-content/plugins/pluginname1/modules/plugins/nameofplugin2.php on line 32 or Fatal error: require(): Failed opening required ‘/var/www/vhosts/websitename/wordpress/wp-content/plugins/pluginname/functions_include.php on line 66 etc.

You can normally see 1 or 2 plugin names within it and these are the plugins that are causing the issue. The best way to check this is to access your websites control panel or FTP and disable the plugin (s) that are causing the issue.

To disable the plugin you can rename your plugin folder located in wp-content/plugins/nameofplugin. Just add the text disable or old at the end of the plugin name. This will disable the plugin and you should be able to get back into the WordPress dashboard. You can then test this plugin with other plugins by disabling them one by one to see where the conflict is and then contact the plugin developer for help.

If the issue occurs after a theme update then you can revert your theme to a standard theme like twenty 17 to check if the error is from the theme and then contact your theme developer for help.

Hacked Account & Malware Attacks

Occasionally websites go down because they are victims of malware or hacking attacks. Such attacks may have originated from local computer systems used to manage your website or from the internet. It is recommended to update your security programs regularly on your computer and not to use public computer systems to access your accounts.

If your website is showing weird ad’s or text then you may need to clean all your website files to remove all malware. Tightening up your website security and regularly maintaining this can help prevent it.

One time I had a client come to me to say they had text on their lasted blog post saying “I am the white horse hacker, you may want to check your website security so contact us at ……) We checked all the files and everything was clear, obviously, some person trying to get business by hacking websites with low security and weak passwords. We contacted them and they responded with…. yes we can clean your website for a price of $500. We removed the text, changed the passwords, updated all the plugins, theme and WordPress version and tighten up their website security to fix the issue and prevent it from happening again.

Your hosting provider may also send you an email saying something like this “During a recent SiteLock security scan of your Bluehost website, malware was detected which is likely evidence of a security compromise.” or ” Hello, While monitoring the server your account is hosted on, your account was found to have been compromised and is being used as a spam source. We have disabled the malicious script/s detailed below and leveraged temporary mail restrictions on your account. We understand that this can be concerning, though please accept this report as advanced notice that action is needed on your account.”

You can contact your hosting provider or developer to help you remove these file.

Changes to DNS

It is likely that you may have purchased your domain name from a third-party service such as crazy domains or site ground. Your website can go down if your domain name has expired or there have been DNS changes. Sometimes the third-party provider may update the IP address. So if your site goes down and you cannot determine what the reason is, you should contact your DNS provider (Domain name).

Issues with the Server

Server overload is the most common issue that is related to a website. This depends on many factors including the web hosting plan you have chosen, server quality, and the resources available to your website. If there is a sudden surge in traffic on the server, it may no longer be able to support all the traffic.

Normally before your website goes down you should get a notification about your bandwidth limit is reached so you can contact your hosting provider about upgrading your hosting service before your website goes offline.

The server hardware malfunctioning is another type of issue. The hardware can have different types of issues that may prevent your website from working. There may be a problem with the circuits or the cooling system. Power failure or natural calamities at your data-centers may also affect your website’s status. Contact your hosting provider.

Maintenance on the Server

All web hosts will have server maintenance downtimes. So if your site is down, this can be the underlying reason. Maintenance is required for a wide range of purposes, including upgrades to hardware, repairs, and updates to software. Most of the time, the hosting service providers notify this type of downtime in advance.

Usually, such maintenance is carried out at off-business-hours, but emergency updates may be carried out during any time of the day. Normally your hosting provider should contact you about this beforehand.

Blocked IP Address

Sometimes internet provider can block your website for unknown reasons. I have had a few clients in the past inform me their website was down and when I checked it was working as usual and this was because their internet provider had blocked them. So make sure it’s not just you that can’t see your website as it may be your internet provider and not your actual website.

Conclusion

So if you are facing a problem with opening your website, these could be the most common reasons. The moment your site goes down without any reason, you should contact your web hosting service or a website tech/ developer.

About Me

I’m Jacinta Thomas, also known as your humble wordpress web design tech whiz and online marketing consultant.

I’m a reserved yet highly motivated and adaptable digital marketing expert ready to use my online marketing knowledge to help your business be seen online and ramp up your sales. I love horses, dogs, cats, country music, chocolate and most of all helping people.

I help family focused entrepreneurs build top ranking, self-managed websites, help work through any wordpress tech issues and get set up with hosting, blogging, SEO and social media, so they can earn more money and live their dream life.

If you’re ready to get your business online, and seen on social media and all search engines then check out my blog, biz resources, jump into my free Facebook group and of course contact me at any time.

Quick guide to compare popular website platforms

There are so many website building options to build your website on including WordPress, Joomla, Squarespace, and Wix to name a few. It gets very confusing on which one you should use, so below I’m going to outline the best platforms for website development below.

Below is a list of the best website platforms for small businesses.

WordPress.org vs WordPress.com

When it comes to WordPress, many users only know there is a single platform. Most users don’t realise that there are two WordPress solutions and both of these are meant for different purposes.

WordPress.org

This is self-hosted WordPress and is the original open source platform that can be used by anyone.  The only thing you will have to buy is the web hosting service and domain name. It provides you with total control over all the other aspects of your website.

WordPress.com

This is a website as a service implementation developed on the WordPress.org platform. You can use it to get a basic free website and upgrade with more space and functions. However, it doesn’t provide you with the level of flexibility that comes with the .org platform.

WordPress.org is self-hosted and very customizable. WordPress.com is not self-hosted and there are lots of limitations on customization. You will own the content when you use the .org platform (as long as you back it up) whereas if you stop paying or managing your .com website then your content will disappear.

WordPress.org vs Wix vs Joomla vs Squarespace

The key features of these different CMS platforms or in simple terms known as website builders are as follows:

  • Wix Website: This CMS provides industry-specific themes and advanced customisation options. It features templates for website and sub-pages, SEO tools, maps, contact forms, and photo galleries. Its own Wix App Market offers hundreds of apps to create fully-featured websites.
  • Joomla: This is also a popular open-source CMS that features an intuitive website management UI. You can get access to hundreds of extensions to customise and enhance the platform’s functionalities. Similar to WordPress, it has a large community where you can seek all the assistance you may require.
  • Squarespace: This SaaS site builder provides all the tools and features required to build and maintain a website. It features CMS, templates, hosting, domain, support, e-commerce solutions, and much more. The Standard version is meant for the vast majority that doesn’t have expertise in web development. Then there is the developer version for advanced users. WordPress is still the more flexible and powerful platform compared to Squarespace. However, Squarespace has its quirks. You will find it easier to set up a website using Squarespace. Just make sure to update your website and you will not have to worry about security and maintenance. If you need a simple website without any hassles, Squarespace can be an excellent choice.

 

  • org: WordPress.org gives you the advantage of self-hosting for a small annual fee with unlimited domains. You can choose premium themes that keep getting updated when the WP versions receive an update. You can easily integrate it with social media. There is no need for customisation and you have access to a vast community for support.

WordPress.org Vs Wix

Both WordPress and Wix are excellent platforms for building your site. But they have many differences.

  • Ease of Use: WordPress offers simplicity for beginners, but if you want to take advantage of its true power, you should gain advanced knowledge. Wix is designed for beginners. It offers a drag-and-drop site builder and all the tools and features are available on a click. However, it does have an advanced web application development solution in the form of Wix Code.
  • Flexibility: WP is highly flexible and customisable, but there can be issues if custom plugins and tools have issues. Wix offers limited customisation, but all the tools and features are controlled and monitored to ensure proper working.
  • Maintenance: With WP, you will have to update and maintain your website on a regular basis. Wix manages its platform and you will not have to worry about maintenance and updates.

WordPress.org vs Joomla

Ease of use is one of the fortes of WP. It is easy and quick to setup and installation take a few minutes. Many hosting services provide one-click install option to make it even simpler. It has a simple user interface and most functions can be completed with a click. Content creation is also easy. Embed content from a wide range of external sources using simple copy/paste function.

Joomla is slightly more complex than WordPress. It is more suited for someone who is moderately tech-savvy. Installation is simple and quick like WP and you can also find hosting services offering single-click installs. There are page builders that allow beginners to create more complex layouts without coding. This CMS provides more functionality than WP but is more complex.

WordPress.org vs Squarespace

There are areas where WordPress is better than Squarespace and other areas where the latter outperforms the former.

The WordPress.org Advantage

  • The CMS is more sophisticated and allows content versioning
  • You can create any type of website with WP
  • WordPress offers more number and variety of templates
  • Create websites with deeper levels of navigation. Squarespace requires custom coding for this.
  • Add more functionality to your WP site using a vast collection of plugins. This is made possible through code blocks and widgets in Squarespace

WP also has the edge when it comes to creating multilingual websites, advanced data capture, advanced SEO, and control over content.

The Squarespace Advantage

  • Squarespace doesn’t have the steep learning curve as WP has
  • Many of the features accessible through plugins in WP are accessible out of the box in Squarespace
  • Web hosting and domain names come as part of the solution
  • Squarespace addresses a significant part of your site’s security

If you require a simple and beautiful website, Squarespace may be a better option.

Conclusion

Thus, in my opinion WordPress.org may be the most popular and best free website builder due to its versatility, vastness, open-source form, and many other factors. There are still areas where other platforms can excel. So make sure to evaluate all the different options before choosing the right CMS for your web applications as it really does come down to personal choice.

If you are a current user of WordPress.org come and join me in my FREE WP Community Group.

About Me

I’m Jacinta Thomas, also known as your humble wordpress web design tech whiz and online marketing consultant.

I’m a reserved yet highly motivated and adaptable digital marketing expert ready to use my online marketing knowledge to help your business be seen online and ramp up your sales. I love horses, dogs, cats, country music, chocolate and most of all helping people.

I help family focused entrepreneurs build top ranking, self-managed websites, help work through any wordpress tech issues and get set up with hosting, blogging, SEO and social media, so they can earn more money and live their dream life.

If you’re ready to get your business online, and seen on social media and all search engines then check out my blog, biz resources, jump into my free Facebook group and of course contact me at any time.

Let’s go ahead and talk about Website Speed for WordPress sites, with this easy guide.

To me, WordPress has proved itself to be the best of the best amongst other Content Management Systems platforms. I have worked over the years with Joomla, Wix, Squarespace, Magento, Shopify, plus other website building platform including Wix. It’s quite obvious that globally websites are getting designed by wordpress simply because it gives you the freedom to pick unique themes and plug-ins. However, conversely, it also has some weaknesses which can end up making your website being more sluggish. Let’s go through now and talk about Website Speed Optimization.

 

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.

Is Website Speed Important on a WordPress Website?

A website with a slow loading will make your potential users leave the page in a jiffy. A case study which involved Google, Amazon and other large websites, says that if there’s 1 second delay in the loading of a page, it can easily lead to loss of 7 percent conversions, 11 percent lesser page views and 16 percent reduction in consumer satisfaction. So this means there’s very little time for you to show your users the content and persuade them to hang on to your website.

Checking Speed of a Word Press Website

I recommend you regularly test your WordPress website speed with this website load test tool named Pingdom. This is an online tool that tests the website’s speed using different locations and it’s absolutely free. It then gives you an overview of what is slowing down your website and what you need to work on.

Optimize your WordPress Website Speed by following these points.

1.Choosing Right Plan for Word press Hosting

Firstly, get started with picking a web hosting provider which is right on your WordPress website. If you are a small business owner and like the whole Do it yourself options, I personally recommend Siteground. I have been working with websites since 2005 and have used many different websites hosting providers from Hostgator, GoDaddy, Bluehost to name a few. Yes, they all have their good points and if you are a small entrepreneur with low traffic then don’t stress too much. I personally recommend Siteground as it has way less downtime, a faster server, fantastic customer service are affordable and offer free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificates. Now if you prefer not to worry about plugin and theme updates, website security and any type of hosting management then we offer a managed hosting option on our 100% Australian owned and operated hosting server that has all the benefits of Siteground plus more. So remember, a website’s speed majorly depends on the hosting speed. Hence, a good hosting bandwidth can surely give your website a boost to perform wonderfully. Websites with servers that take ages to process the MySQL commands and HTTP requests will always have a bad speed. 2. Choosing Right WordPress Theme/Framework Opt for a theme/framework which is optimized for tablets, mobile devices, and desktops. If pages aren’t coded correctly and there’s a usage of loads of images in the design, it will add unnecessary weight to the website. However, nowadays theme developers have started optimizing their themes, as a result, they’re faster and responsive at the same time. Using right theme /framework gives good performance and better speed to your website, so try to make a right selection. I personally recommend Elegant Themes Divi, it has thousands of different layouts and it’s an easy drop and drag system that you can manage your tablet and mobile settings easily.   3. Making Use of Effective Plug-Ins A Plug-in is the biggest cause of a word press website slowing down. If you install a Plug-in without proper research, the website will always give performance issues sooner or later. A complete research about the compatibility and functionality is very important before you pick a plug-in. Now there is a plugin that helps you find out the exact loading time of each plugin called P3 Profiler plugin, however as its untested in the latest WordPress version and it has been updated for 3 years, I would think this would be a security risk, so I personally no longer use it, and do it the old-fashioned way. Only use up to date plugins and test each one as I upload them.

I am a strong believer that adding more plugins slows down the website as it needs to use processing time and memory.

4. Choosing Content Delivery Network Cache Plug-in and Enabling Browser Caching.

A CDN plug-in is very useful since it publishes the static HTML files rather than dynamic files and this helps immensely in reducing the page loading time. This plug-in features Minification, feeds caching, Gzipping, Content Delivery Network support and lots more. I have used WP Super Cache, WP Fastest Cache, and W3 Total Cache. I like W3 Total Cache as it is flawless and has all the website optimization tools in it. You can also enable browser caching by adding expiry period for specific resource type in your .htaccess files, however, this is something I suggest your WordPress tech does. When large files such as JavaScript files, images, and CSS files get changed or updated your website speed becomes slow. Enabling one of these browser caches as suggest above will allow the user to boost the loading time by locally storing a cached copy. Of course, this will reduce calls to the website server and won’t let the user download the same file again and again.

5. Optimizing the Images

Web pages containing plenty of images may take a long time in loading, therefore it’s best if you choose to optimize the images before uploading them to the word press website. Editing software such as Photoshop or canva is great. Doing this before uploading your images will optimize the images and maintain the quality as well. Ideal image size should be below 100KB. Think that you have a web page with 20 images, each sized 500 KB. This means 10MB of data is required for just loading these images. I would also recommend using the lazy load plugin as it would speed up website load time by just loading the images visible on the screen if you haven’t optimised your images to start with. An awesome tool to use if you use Chrome as your internet browser is Page Ruler, it lets you measure the size of your website so you can plan to resize your image to that size before uploading it online.

6. Minify JavaScript and CSS

Whenever webpage loads, the JavaScript files and CSS sends a request to the HTTP, therefore there’re a lot of requests to the server, this makes page loading slow. PHP5 application can minify by combining multiple JavaScript files and CSS into one file.  Consequently, the request number of HTTP gets reduced to a great extent. CSS and JS minification is a tricky part. Sometimes using Minification tools such as the Better Word Press Minify or WP Minify plugins completely messes up your website. I always manually do this as it is much safer that using plugin.

7.Enabling Gzip Compression Word Press gives you the ease to enable Gzip compression. This can let you transfer your website page to some browser at 70% of the original size approximately. The browser will then decompress that page and put on view to the end user, this helps a word press website to perform well. For enabling Gzip, just change the Gzip value from 0 to you’re.htaccess file. Any standard plugins like Check and Enable GZIP compression do the same job but doesn’t go adding more plugins as this will just add to the site loading time anyway.

8. Reducing Drafts, Spams, Pingbacks, Post Revisions and Trackbacks It’s extremely important to delete spam comments, unwanted pingbacks, and trackbacks on a regular basis. Word Press by default saves numerous revisions in the drafts but this isn’t required because it only adds to your database. The plugin Akismet plugin is one of the powerful tool to combat against spams. I add custom code to restrict access to XML-RPC and server-side authentication to wp-admin files, in-case if the website is under DDoS attack. Also, I delete old revisions and inactive posts data from database manually, as it is much better option than depending on plugin such as WP-Optimize or WP-DB Manager

9.Disabling Hot linking and Leaching of Content Hot linking is a kind of “theft” of your bandwidth. This happens when other websites directly link to your website images through their articles and this puts a good amount of load on your server. A Content scraping website will automatically make posts by actually stealing your images or content from the RSS feed. So disabling Hot linking as well as Leaching will save your WordPress website from these activities. Again you can add some code to your .htaccess, file but this is for another article.

10.Optimizing Word Press Database For enhanced performance, always optimize the database of your word press website by removing all unnecessary information. WP-Sweep plug-in easily manages the database optimization by allowing you to delete database like trashed posts, unused tags, revisions, etc. However, this can also be done manually to save adding more plugins online.

In Summary

Conclusively, without the correct precautions to speed up your website, you will lose your Google ranking and this can affect your website’s SEO.  Remember, faster-loading word press website will always improve your user experience, increase the page views and make the SEO of your website better. Contact us if you would like further help.

About Me
I’m Jacinta Thomas, also known as your humble wordpress web design tech whiz and online marketing consultant. I’m a reserved yet highly motivated and adaptable digital marketing expert ready to use my online marketing knowledge to help your business be seen online and ramp up your sales. I love horses, dogs, cats, country music, chocolate and most of all helping people. I help family focused entrepreneurs build top ranking, self-managed websites, help work through any wordpress tech issues and get set up with hosting, blogging, SEO and social media, so they can earn more money and live their dream life. If you’re ready to get your business online, and seen on social media and all search engines then check out my blog, biz resources, jump into my free Facebook group and of course contact me at any time.

Business Tools and Systems that have helped me as an Entrepreneur.

Starting a Business and becoming a self Employed Entrepreneur can be very overwhelming so in this article, I share with you all the free online business tools and systems that have helped me as an Entrepreneur.

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.

I’m Jacinta Thomas, and I help people build websites for their business.

I have been in business now for over 10 years and wanted to share with you, in this article, some of the best business tools and systems I use that have kept me on track and helped my business start afloat.

My business “Thomas Web Designs” specialises in WordPress, which is one of the easiest and powerful content management systems available.

WordPress allows business owners to be able to edit or add content to their website without needing to know HTML coding. This allows me to offer website packages for all budgets depending if someone wanted to do the website themselves or wanting me to do the complete set up for them.

Below are the Business tools and systems I recommend.

 

1. Accounting

At the end of the day, I still do my own accounts, so I use QuickBooks accounting software It’s so simple and easy to enter my invoices, and print out profit/ loss and balance sheets at the end of the month for tax.

I highly recommend you check them all out if you haven’t done so already and started introducing these tools and systems to your own business.

2.Administration, Planning, and Organisation.

For general administration tasks I use Google Drive as it’s so easy to store client information, and files in the one place, I can then easily share this with anyone if I need to and when I’m out and about for the day I can work from my phone or any other computer and access the files I need.

As its secure cloud storage with automatic backup’s, I have eliminated the task of backing up my computer files on a daily basis and I don’t have to stress if my computer crashes. As well as files, I also store my planning information in here including social media plan, Facebook group networking plan, my business, and marketing plan, plus goal list to easily refer to.

The other essential admin program I use is Grammarly. I was terrible at English and I still am.  Grammarly hold’s my hand and correct any misspelled words and corrects sentence’s for me, whilst editing a word document, website or any other file.

Google Calendar helps me stay on track with appointments and events in both my business and personal life.

To get the most done during the week as well as staying on top of my tasks, every few days I write a to-do list and prioritise and plan each day. I then use batching, multi-tasking, plus I have just started outsourcing my heavy workloads. Setting reminders up on my phone that is linked to my iPad and computer also helps remind me of daily tasks, follow up calls etc…

Siri, is also my best friend, I just sit my phone on my desk and when I remember something, I just say “Hey Siri” remind me to ring blah blah in 30 mins or remind me to reply back the facebook message at 9.30am etc.  I’m also asking Siri to set my alarm for 45 mins etc when I’m setting a time limit on work tasks etc.

3.Marketing.

I use a marketing, social media management and Facebook networking planners to manage my business marketing. I like to do some sort of marketing on a daily basis. Most of my marketing is really just networking. I network allot in facebook groups, on my social media pages, writing newsletters, and blog posts for on my website and sharing this information.

By providing allot of FREE information to get my name out there as much as I can and from this I get customers coming back for more and paying for my services and products. I also work on my website and search engine optimization to keep on moving up the ranks. If you join any of my websites or Jump Start your Biz programs I share my planners for all these with you.

4.Images and Design.

Yes, I may be a website designer but I’m far from a graphic designer. Canva is the program I use for all my graphics, flyers, ebook designs etc. I then use a variety of image libraries including Pixabay, Shutterstock, Pic Monkey, to find images I can use for web designs or other graphics that are free or cheap.

5. E-mail Marketing

For my newsletter setups to send out automatically or on a regular basis, I use mailerlite.  It’s relatively new compared to Aweber, Mailchimp etc but its free for like 1000 users and very user-friendly. My clients find that using Mailerlite is 100% easier to use than other email marketing platforms.

 

About Me

I’m Jacinta Thomas, also known as your humble wordpress web design tech whiz and online marketing consultant.

I’m a reserved yet highly motivated and adaptable digital marketing expert ready to use my online marketing knowledge to help your business be seen online and ramp up your sales. I love horses, dogs, cats, country music, chocolate and most of all helping people.

I help family focused entrepreneurs build top ranking, self-managed websites, help work through any wordpress tech issues and get set up with hosting, blogging, SEO and social media, so they can earn more money and live their dream life.

If you’re ready to get your business online, and seen on social media and all search engines then check out my blog, biz resources, jump into my free Facebook group and of course contact me at any time.

DYI guide to setting up an Ecommerce Website.

Do you have some products for sale that you want to sell online??

Getting a website up and running can be expensive and an E-commerce website design can run into $2000- $3000. If you don’t have that type of money, then using this ‘Do it yourself’ guide to setup your E-commerce website free is the way to go.

You need a wordpress website already set up. WordPress itself was developed in 2003. It’s a software script that you install onto your website hosting and then from there, you can create a completely customized website without knowing website code.

The first step is to login to your wordpress dashboard backend, then go to plugin, type in Woocommerce, install and activate.

woocommerce

Feel free to check out my WordPress support and training membership for more help.

Once Woocommerce is activated you will see two new headings on the left hand sidebar of your wordpress dashboard. These are Woocommerce and Products. Before you see these you will get a welcome notification from Woocommerce that looks like this.

woothemes

I recommence you follow these steps now, so click lets go and make sure you have the following information on hand.

  • Shipping postage costs if you are sending out physical products.
  • If you are going to charge tax or not.
  • The way you’re going to accept payments.
  • Product information, images, how many in stock etc.

Shipping/ postage costs

Working out how to send your products to your customers at a cost effective rate often takes abit of testing. You don’t want to charge someone $15 for postage if it only actually costs $8 as this is unfair to have the customer pay $7 for handling. However only charging $8 to the customer where a parcel might cost you $15 to post is not fair for you as you lose $7 in profits. The best thing to do is actually go down to your local Australia post and talk to one of the staff, if you’re able, take a product or two down with you. They will give you some advice about the best way to send your items. If you have standard size items then I find using the pre-paid satchel the way to go.

These are the prices for pre-paid satchels.

up to 500 grams $8.50

Up to 3kg $13.80

Up to 5kg $17.60

These are great but for smaller items. However if you have larger or heavier items you will have to go with other options of boxes, larger satchels etc

Depending on where you are located, in my experience from living in Goulburn NSW. WA, NT, SA are the most expensive states to post products to. I would have allot at the pricing options of similar businesses to yourself.

Tax? Yes or No

Within Australia this tax relates to the Goods and service tax. If you’re gross income is less than $75,000 then it’s optional to register for GST. As a small business owner myself I don’t make this much, however I do plan to in the near future. At the moment I chose not to register for GST, however as soon as I get closer to this gross income I will register.

Accepting payments

There are a few different ways that you can accept payments from customers. You can collect cash on delivery if you are local and have the option to deliver products or you can accept payment on pick up. You might accept a cheque or payment via direct transfer which goes straight into your bank account. You can also accept credit card payment. To however accept credit card payment you need a credit card merchant provider. There are many options available. You can chat with your bank about a credit card machine or you can use an online payment gateway like PayPal or stripe.

Product information, images, how many in stock etc.

Once you have set up your online shop you need to add your products. This includes some information about the product, a photo of it, and the price, how many of each item you actually have in stock.

Woocommerce will allow you to add drop downs so your customer can pick a certain product colour, size, etc as well. So have a look around.

Feel free to check out my free WordPress support and training group.

Have a great day.

Cheers

Jacinta

About Me
I’m Jacinta Thomas, also known as your humble wordpress web design tech whiz and online marketing consultant.

I’m a reserved yet highly motivated and adaptable digital marketing expert ready to use my online marketing knowledge to help your business be seen online and ramp up your sales. I love horses, dogs, cats, country music, chocolate and most of all helping people.

I help family focused entrepreneurs build top ranking, self-managed websites, help work through any wordpress tech issues and get set up with hosting, blogging, SEO and social media, so they can earn more money and live their dream life.

If you’re ready to get your business online, and seen on social media and all search engines then check out my blog, biz resources, jump into my free Facebook group and of course contact me at any time.